Tennessee State University President Glenda Glover testified alongside other historically black college and university leaders before Congress on Wednesday, urging lawmakers to correct historic “discriminatory” funding practices and to continue to support schools.
Glover testified in a virtual hearing before the House Committee on Education and Work ahead of a meeting with Vice President Kamala Harris, a former HBCU.
During his testimony, Glover described three specific areas that remain persistent challenges for HBCUs, including Tennessee State University – infrastructure and deferred maintenance, technology and new academic and research programs.
“The HBCUs remain at the forefront of educate students who need access transformative power in higher education despite discriminatory funding, ”said Glover.
“We often ask the question, why do we still need HBCU? Glover said. “The question should be: how do these colleges and universities have so little and produce so much? And how can models be used by other institutions to move our great country forward? “
Tennessee State University has struggled with its own funding over the years.
A recent legislative report released earlier this year showed that Tennessee could have bypassed the university’s land grant between $ 151 million and $ 544 million in land grant funds over the past several decades.
Although the documents show no record of TSU receiving state funds for its land grant program, the University of Tennessee – the state’s other land grant institute – has sometimes received more. than what is required by the federal government.
Tennessee lawmakers acknowledged the long-standing problems, but also said at the time that it might take years to resolve the funding issues.
Glover and other leaders thanked Congress for last year’s federal coronavirus emergency relief funds for higher education institutions and praised President Joe Biden’s administration Rebuilding a better economic agenda.
“Today, we ask you to continue to support the HBCUs, not only in emergencies, but also to support the HBCUs to help them become competitive and sustainable for the benefit of the national economy,” said Glover.
Glover also joined other leaders of the Pan-Hellenic National Council, a group of traditionally African-American fraternities and sororities also known as “Divine 9,” in a meeting with Harris on Wednesday.
Glover is also the international president of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated.
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Meghan Mangrum is covering education for the USA TODAY – Tennessee Network. Contact her at [email protected] Follow her on Twitter @memangrum.